Tax Scammers Arrested in Miami

Posted by NCBRC - May 27, 2016

Five Cuban nationals were arrested in Miami in connection with an ongoing tax scam. See Washington Post. The sophisticated scam involves scammers calling victims on the telephone, often using Voice Over Internet Protocol that makes the caller ID appear to be the IRS, falsely identifying themselves as IRS agents, and demanding money for taxes owed. The callers insist that money be wired immediately, recently demanding that the victims pay using iTunes gift cards, or the victim will be subject to arrest. When they call, they claim to have the victim’s tax return and they seek further personal information.

The suspects are accused of tricking 1,500 victims into paying a total of $2 million. This is the “largest and most pervasive” scam the IRS has faced in 30 years and is thought to have taken in approximately 6,400 victims overall and netted criminals $36.5 million.

The scammers were tracked down following a tip that came into the Senate Aging Committee’s fraud hotline last year. The call led fraud investigators to uncover the identity of some of the suspects through Walmart surveillance tapes. Christian Science Monitor. The suspects have been charged with wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

The IRS advises victims receiving such calls to hang up immediately. For more information, call the IRS information line at 1.800.829.1040. To report scams contact TIGTA at 1.800.366.4484 or visit the “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” form on their website.


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